Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition

Meaning

What does Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition mean?

Nobody expects the Spanish inquisition refers to a memorable quote from the Monty Python’s Flying Circus TV program, nodding to the Catholic institution in Spain, tasked with establishing Christian unity on Iberia in the late 15th century.

Origin

What's the origin of Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition?

The Season 2 Episode 2 of Monty Python’s Flying Circus was first aired on September 22nd, 1970, under the title The Spanish Inquisition.

The Spanish Inquisition is featured in the sketch several times, as a Dudebro is likening a woman asking questions to the inquisition, to which the mentioned party erupts unexpectedly, screaming “Nobody expects the Spanish inquisition”.

It quickly became a catchphrase, getting references from all sources of pop culture, including the Batman Family’s third issue, published in 1976.

The line was also featured in the 1998 movie, Sliding Doors.

Spread & Usage

How did Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition spread?

The term, Spanish Inquisition was first defined on Urban Dictionary on February 8th, 2004, and a few months later the YTMND site was launched, looping the line “Nobody expects the Spanish inquisition”.

Throughout the 2010’s, references to the scene remained consistent, with new parodies, reuploads of the original clip and remix songs were uploaded to YouTube.

External resources

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